Issue 13
February 3, 2019
____ _ _ ____ ____ ____ ____ __ _ _ __ __ __ __ __ / ___)/ )( \( _ \( __)( _ \( _ \ / \ / )( \( ) ( ) ( )( )( ) \___ \) \/ ( ) __/ ) _) ) / ) _ (( O )\ /\ // (_/\ / (_/\ )( )( )( (____/\____/(__) (____)(__\_)(____/ \__/ (_/\_)\____/ \____/(__)(__)(__)

Tom Brady, the ageless quarterback for the New England Patriots will lead his team on to the field today to compete in Super Bowl LIII vs The Los Angeles Rams. Mr. Brady, already anointed the Greatest Of All Time. (G.O.A.T.) by many NFL analysts has earned numerous accolades. At 41 years old, he is also an outlier with respect to age and ongoing superior performance. His illustrious career has spanned almost two decades; to date, Brady currently ranks 3rd in touchdown passes (517), 4th in Passing Yards (70,514), Passes Completed (6,004) & Passer Rating (97.6) and 13th in Completion Percentage (64%). Today will be Brady's record breaking 9th Super Bowl appearance. He has emerged victorious in five previous championship games and enjoyed MVP honors in four of those contests. Let’s also not forget that Brady has been crowned the NFL's most valuable player 3 times and been selected to 14 Pro Bowls.

Remarkably for most his tenure with the Patriots, Brady hasn't had the benefit of throwing to top flight wide receivers. He is particularly skilled at transforming average players around him into stars. Unfortunately for his divisional rivals, he does not seem inclined to hang up his cleats any time soon; Brady stated that there is "zero chance he is retiring" after this year’s Super Bowl.

Some experts make the argument that it is unfair to compare Brady to former greats like John Elway, Joe Montana & Dan Marino. Those stars played in an era when teams relied more on running the football. Quarterbacks of that time did not benefit from as many opportunities to pad their statistics. Moreover, as a result of numerous rule changes football is a less violent sport. Players today, and particularly quarterbacks, are afforded more protection than ever before. This has enabled them to stay healthier and avoid absorbing the most debilitating hits, thereby extending their careers. This skews the equation when comparing Brady to other football greats. While the argument over who is the G.O.A.T won't be settled anytime soon, it is without debate that Mr. Brady is the most successful quarterback of all time both on and off the field.

That Brady’s success on the football field is equally matched by his All American good looks renders him almost invincible. Amongst his fan base, it would seem that females are more inclined to overlook his shortcomings even where it involves suspect behavior with women earlier in his life. While Tom Brady appears happily married to former supermodel Giselse Bundchen, with whom he shares two children, that relationship commenced in morally murky waters. Though there has been no formal admission as to the course of events, it seems quite likely he began his relationship with Ms. Bundchen while he was actively involved with actress Bridget Moynihan in 2006. In December of 2006, Ms. Moynihan confirmed their relationship had ended. In February of 2007 she announced that she was over three months pregnant with Brady’s child. The timeline is well documented and very public; what was conveniently swept under the rug is that Mr. Brady did not appear to conduct himself in a manner fitting a man of his public stature.

At The Quintessential Centrist, our objective is not to pass judgment on Tom Brady or grade his moral compass. We don't know him personally nor are we privy to the details of what transpired over 10 years ago. What we do know is this: a plethora of young women, many of whom declare themselves to be women's rights activists, have glossed over Mr. Brady's past personal transgressions. Instead they have focused on his All American good looks and football acumen which have earned him a free pass - excuse the pun - with many feminists alike. Indeed, some of Tom Brady's most ardent admirers are the same individuals who claim to be champions of women's rights but who ironically refuse to even admit or discuss let alone admonish Tom Brady for some of the same perceived character flaws they critique other men for.

It begs the question, if a herculean 325 pound offensive lineman with average ability and a darker complexion made the conscious decision to leave his girlfriend he impregnated out of wedlock and "begin" a relationship with another woman before his former partner had even delivered their baby, might the court of public opinion be different? Would the signs adoring fans hold up at games read "15 yard penalty for unsportsmanlike like conduct" instead of "I love you Tom"?